Here’s what to do about it.
“I've learned that fear limits you and your vision. It serves as blinders to what may be just a few steps down the road for you. The journey is valuable, but believing in your talents, your abilities, and your self-worth can empower you to walk down an even brighter path. Transforming fear into freedom - how great is that?” - Soledad O'Brien
Figuring out if you’re letting fear run (and ultimately ruin) your life is actually really easy. If at anytime you get an idea or desire to do something but then your ego mind pops up & says you can’t or lists a bunch of reasons why your idea won’t work or why you shouldn’t move forward, that’s fear. Pretty simple.
Of course your logical mind is beneficial , obviously you want your mind to step in at times and say Whoa slow down! Let’s think about this, you just met Tom, 2 weeks ago, should you really go to Vegas and elope?
But how do you learn to follow your heart, which is the opposite of listening to fear, and still listen to your logical brain when needed? What’s the solution in the example above, when you were thinking of going to Vegas? Easy, not go to Vegas (logical brain) but continue to date Tom (heart). How do we apply this technique in less extreme examples?
Let’s say you want to ask for a promotion at work but you immediately start thinking of all the reasons why you’ll be turned down. If you give up and don’t ask for the promotion, you are letting fear run the show.
What’s the solution? Prepare fully before asking for the promotion. Have concrete examples of why you should be promoted. This way you’re using your logical mind to follow through on something you really want to do.
A main reason we don’t follow through on our ideas is because we are afraid we won’t get the result or answer we want. But so what? So what if you don’t get the promotion. Your life isn’t any worse off than it was before. Asking for the promotion and not getting it is actually better than not asking at all because the meeting may have given you a better idea of how to get a promotion in the future or a clearer understanding that a promotion won’t be happening anytime soon, if ever. In that case you may want to start looking for another job.
Let fear be your friend, it can be a great teacher, where there is fear, there is work to do. Anytime fear comes up, take a moment to evaluate it. Realize what it’s preventing you from doing and decide how you are going to work through it. When we follow our heart instead of listening to our fear, things fall into place and the world opens up to us.
When have you felt fear but moved forward anyway?